VIAGRA could save lives: Sex drug could protect against THIS dangerous condition

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VIAGRA – a drug taken to treat erectile dysfunction – reduces the risk of dying from heart failure, experts have deduced.

Men prescribed phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE5) inhibitors sold under the brand names Viagra, Cialis, Levitra and Spedra after their first heart attack were 33 per cent less likely to die from any cause, new research has revealed.There was no effect on survival in men who took alprostadil, another hormone prescribed to boost blood flow to the penis.

Experts found men taking PDE5 inhibitors and alprostadil were 40 per cent less likely to be hospitalised for heart failure than if they took no drugs to treat their erectile dysfunction.

The NHS currently warns men should exercise caution taking PDE5 inhibitors if they have cardiovascular disease, such as coronary heart disease and should not take them if they have low blood pressure, have recently had a stroke or have angina.

However, Swedish researchers suggested these erectile dysfunction drugs could be beneficial after a heart attack.”If you have an active sex life after a heart attack, it is probably safe to use PDE5 inhibitors,” said Dr Daniel Peter Andersson at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm.

“This type of erectile dysfunction treatment is beneficial in terms of prognosis, and having an active sex life seems to be a marker for a decreased risk of death.”

The study analysed the records of 43,000 men age 80 years or under, taken to hospital for a first heart attack between 2007 and 2013.

They were analysed for an average of 3.3 years following this first heart attack and whether they were prescribed PDE5 inhibitors or alprostadil.

Overall just over 7 per cent of men were prescribed an erectile dysfunction drug, 92 per cent PDE5 inhibitors and 8 per cent alprostadil.

Men using PDE5 inhibitors or alprostadil were 40 per cent less likely to be hospitalised for heart failure.

However, the study could not establish the direct cause and effect of the drugs.

Dr Andersson said: “We think that if you have an active sex life it’s probably an indicator of a healthy lifestyle, especially in the oldest quartile – those 70 to 80 years old.”From the perspective of a doctor, if a patient asks about erectile dysfunction drugs after a heart attack and has no contraindications for PDE5 inhibitors, based on these results you can feel safe about prescribing it.”

He added the results were surprising because erectile dysfunction was associated with an increased risk of heart disease in otherwise healthy men.

The study was presented at the American College of Cardiology’s 66th Annual Scientific Session in Washington.

This comes after it was revealed Viagra could reduce the risk of men with type 2 diabetes dying from heart disease.

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